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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Spotify announces expanded Samsung partnership focused on pre-installs and free trials

In August 2018, Spotify became Samsung’s go-to streaming music service provider following a strategic partnership between the two companies that initially focused on bringing Spotify to Samsung Smart TVs and a deeper connection with Samsung’s assistant technology, Bixby. Today, timed alongside the retail launch of Samsung’s Galaxy S10, the companies are expanding their partnership to make Spotify a pre-installed application on a range of Samsung devices, including the new Galaxy S10, S10+, S10e, S10 5G, as well as the Galaxy Fold and some of Samsung’s lower mid-range Galaxy A devices.

In addition, U.S. consumers buying the new Galaxy S10 will qualify for six months of free Spotify Premium access if they’re new customers, Spotify said.

The two companies had not offered many more details about their partnership plans since the announcement last year, saying only that a lot of discussions were taking place as to what’s next. However, a move to pre-install Spotify on Samsung phones was likely under consideration from day one – especially after the 2016 failure of Samsung’s own Milk Music streaming service, which meant it no longer had its own direct answer to Apple Music.

At the time of Milk Music’s closure, Samsung said it would shift to investing in a partner model for integrating the “best” music services on to its Galaxy family of devices. Later picking Spotify as the strategic partner made sense, as it’s a clear frontrunner in the space and one that’s not operated by a tech giant like Google’s YouTube Music/Google Play Music, Apple Music, or Amazon Music.

The Spotify-Samsung partnership not only means that Spotify now gets deeper integration on devices and services, like Bixby, it could potentially allow the two companies to work together on under the hood, cross-platform integrations, as well. This could benefit Spotify’s ambitious podcasting plans, as listeners could pick up where they left off as they switch between devices. That wouldn’t have necessarily been possible without a device partnership like this.

Spotify says the expanded Samsung partnership will see the music service pre-installed on “millions” of Samsung devices worldwide, starting today, March 8, 2019.

“We were very excited to be named Samsung’s go-to music streaming service several months ago and today’s news will only ensure a more seamless Spotify listening experience across devices for listeners around the world,” said Sten Garmark, VP of Consumer Products, Spotify, in a statement. “This partnership makes it easy for Samsung mobile users to access their favorite music and podcasts on Spotify, wherever they are and however they choose to listen.”


Source: TechCrunch

Inside the High-Stakes Race to Make Quantum Computers Work

Quantum computers could help explain some of the most fundamental mysteries in the universe and upend everything from finance to encryption—if only someone could get them to work.
Source: Wired

Okta to acquire workflow automation startup Azuqua for $52.5M

During its earnings report yesterday afternoon, Okta announced it intends to acquire Azuqua, a Bellevue, Washington workflow automation startup for $52.5 million.

In a blog post announcing the news, Okta co-founder and COO Frederic Kerrest saw the combining of the two companies as a way to move smoothly between applications in a complex workflow without having to constantly present your credentials.

“With Okta and Azuqua, IT teams will be able to use pre-built connectors and logic to create streamlined identity processes and increase operational speed. And, product teams will be able to embed this technology in their own applications alongside Okta’s core authentication and user management technology to build…integrated customer experiences,” Kerrest wrote.

In a modern enterprise, people and work are constantly shifting and moving between applications and services and combining automation software with identity and access management could offer a seamless way to move between them.

This represents Okta’s largest acquisition to-date and follows Stormpath almost exactly two years ago and ScaleFT last July. Taken together, you can see a company that is trying to become a more comprehensive identity platform.

Azuqua, which had raised $16 million since it launched in 2013, appears to have given investors  a pretty decent return. When the deal closes, Okta intends to bring its team on board and leave them in place in their Bellevue offices, creating a Northwest presence for the San Francisco company. Azuqua customers include Airbnb, McDonald’s, VMware and Hubspot,

Okta was founded in 2009 and raised over $229 million before going public April, 2017.


Source: TechCrunch

My Jibo Is Dying and It's Breaking My Heart

Jibo is a robot, but that doesn’t make his digital dementia any less painful.
Source: Wired

Nintendo Labo Gets a Cheap VR Kit

Also, the ‘Fortnite’ and ‘Apex Legends’ battle royale rages on and Steam made a questionable statement.
Source: Wired

The Best-Worst Marketing Ideas for International Women’s Day

For a little-celebrated holiday, we sure got lots of emails from publicists about it. Here’s what they think you should be reading about today.
Source: Wired

Uber pays $2.6M to settle historical charges it violated Dutch taxi laws

Another fine for Uber’s historical playbook: The ride-hailing giant has agreed to pay around $2.6 million (€2.3M) to settle charges in the Netherlands related to violations of local taxi law, dating back to when it was operating a peer-to-peer ride-hailing service in contravention of local transport laws.

Uber offered its UberPop service in the Netherlands between July 2014 and November 2015, when it pulled the plug — saying the service “had become a blog to regulatory progress”. Which is a long-winded way of saying it wasn’t legal to operate it.

The Dutch Public Prosecution Service (DPPS) announced the settlement today, saying it consists of a €2,025,000 fine across the four Uber companies — Uber International BV, Uber Netherlands BV, Uber BV and Rasier Operations BV — in addition to €309,409 in “criminally earned capital”, via Uber’s 20% commission on rides, which is being clawed back.

The DPPS said it’s happy to settle with Uber as it believes the courts would have reached the same penalizing conclusion.

In a press release announcing the settlement it writes that the four named Uber entities “co-perpetrated” the violation of local taxi law, which requires transport services to have a taxi license to operate (whereas with UberPop Uber allowed anyone with a vehicle to sell a ride).

Uber BV has been given the maximum possible fine (€810,000). The other three entities have been fined half the maximum — as a result of smaller roles in the violation, the DPPS said.

“The person responsible for the rollout of UberPop in the Netherlands has performed a 90-hour [community service] penalty,” it adds.

Commenting on the settlement in a statement, an Uber spokesperson said: “We have changed the way we do business across the world, putting integrity in the core of everything that we do. We are committed to being a good partner to Dutch cities. We have shut down UberPOP services in 2015. Since then, we only allow professional and certified drivers on the app, through uberX, Van and Black services.”

Also since 2015: Europe’s top court judged Uber to be a transport company — firmly closing the regional book on any more attempts to circumvent taxi laws by claiming it’s ‘just a technology platform’.


Source: TechCrunch

23 Amazing Female Photographers You Should Know

In recognition of International Women’s Day, here are some of the best women behind the camera.
Source: Wired

How YouTube Made a Star Out of This Super-Smart Film Critic

Lindsey Ellis is an idiosyncratic film critic who has fun with everything from the cinematography of Cocteau to the semiotics of the Transformer franchise.
Source: Wired

Movie Review: Captain Marvel Is About Female Power—Not Empowerment

Carol Danvers doesn’t need anyone’s permission—or help—to kick ass.
Source: Wired

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